Before resuming my study to American Studies Graduate Program at UGM in 2002, I was a ‘conventional’ woman who followed the stereotyping of men and women. Much before 2001 (the year when that Californian left me, when I started to create a new identity for myself as Ms. Black—wearing black most of my time when going to my workplace), I loved to wear different kind of colors for skirt/trousers, and I would carry the handbag and wear high-heeled shoes with similar colors. I believed that women had to be feminine to attract the opposite sex. LOL. As if I wouldn’t be able to attract men without being feminine; as if I wouldn’t be able to survive without getting attraction from men. LOL. (oh poor me!!! LOL.)
In the beginning of the first semester of American Studies, I still sometimes wore my high-heeled shoes when going to campus. It easily made me tired coz I usually went to campus or the library on foot! Therefore, not long after that, I put my high-heeled shoes in their box peacefully, LOL, and changed to wear sneakers together with jeans and T-shirt.
In the third semester, I started to teach again in my workplace coz not enough teachers. It made me busy commute from Yogya to Semarang (around 120 kms away, about three hours by bus) every week. With ‘being student’ mood on my mind, of course, I felt very lazy to wear my high-heeled shoes. I oftentimes came to class by wearing jeans and a polo shirt too. Moreover, I was still a new feminist, by reading Friedan’s book, The Feminine Mystique. Just like feminists in 1960s America, I didn’t want to make myself look feminine. LOL.
Time passed by.
I read more books about feminism and gender. My favorite is Jurnal Perempuan (Women’s Journal). Its online website is on www.jurnalperempuan.com The articles there really support women to be like what they want; women are free to do anything, to be anything, free from any intimidation from society, moreover from a selfish husband who probably would say, “I love you sweetie, stay at home please for me.” or “I love you my darling one. I want to ease your burden by having another wife.” LOL. Or “I do care about you dearest. Please cover all part of your body coz it is all mine.” LOL.
At the time of my coming back to my workplace fully (after I finished my Master’s Degree), I still loved wearing sneakers to go to the office behind my long black dress and blazer. I didn’t give a damn to people looked at me strangely. LOL. Even, sometimes some students laughed when seeing my sneakers under my long dress. LOL. (FYI, I wear dress not coz I want to look feminine, but I really feel comfortable wearing it.)
Recently I oftentimes wear my black high-heeled boots together with my long black dress and black blazer. I find it comfortable too. I enjoy the feeling of being feminine though I am not really a feminine person. LOL. (Ups… what is feminine anyway? LOL.) And I am still a feminist.
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